1. The public bus stop near the airport
The cost can’t be beat. If you walk a quarter mile down straight down the highway from the airport, you can jump on a bus heading toward the main Waikiki hotels for $2.00. No $50.00 cab rides necessary here (sorry, I’ve spent a small fortune getting from JFK into Manhattan!)
2. The Hawaiian Monarch
This hotel is a five minute walk to Waikiki Beach and half the price of the more tourist-y hotels on the main strip. It’s not fancy, but who sits in their hotel room all day when pristine beaches await anyway?
3. Alamoana Shopping Center
This is the largest outdoor mall in the world. Also, it features the most amazing food court ever with over 40 options, many Asian-themed. The variety of stores is mind-boggling. Chanel, Dior, Neiman Marcus await, with the more affordable Sears and Old Navy thrown in.
4. The rest of the island
If you’re going to be in town more than a handful of days, rent a car and escape the tourist-ridden Waikiki. I spent a full day visiting quaint surfing towns, running into the Pacific, and making a pit-stop at the Kona Brewing Company, set on the docks of the scenic Koko Marina. The happy hour menu is full of tasty food and drink specials at unbelievable deals!
5. The Oahu Stadium Swap Meet
This destination has the best deals on tourist trinkets. Visit for deals like $7.00 for jumbo beach towels and $20.00 for 8 shirts; it’s definitely worth the $1.00 price of admission. And, if you’re weary of the public bus ride back to Waikiki, spend a few dollars extra to get a shuttle ride from a local. We had ‘The Wolf’ driving us and trust me, it was worth it just for the surfing stories!
I made my first trip to Oahu earlier this month; more photographic evidence soon!